Published by Templar, 2019.
For his new picture book Duncan Beedie has chosen another unlikely hero; it was a pigeon in The Last Chip and this time it’s a moth. Molly is an ambitious young moth with dreams of space travel. She wants to be a real astronaut and fly to the Moon. Molly tells her mom of her plans but is met with doubts. However, Molly is not deterred and in between caring for her siblings (very cute but highly demanding larvae) she undertakes some serious training for her space mission. I loved the series of illustrations for this:
Finally, she’s ready and with her homemade space helmet she blasts off into space. There are a few false starts. She mistakes a lightbulb, then a street lamp and finally a lighthouse for the moon. The adults she encounters on her way are dismissive of her ambition but Molly continues regardless. After her third botched attempt she does start to feel a little dejected. Luckily, a friendly crab gives her the motivation she needs and Molly makes it to the Moon!
Once there, she feels rather lonely but fortunately her lunar landing coincides with a manned mission to the Moon and she’s able to assist the astronauts with their scientific research and have some fun too!
The illustrations are so wonderful – charismatic characters, atmospheric colour palettes, and humour. My three-year old son and I really enjoyed poring over them as we read. There are so many fabulous details! We spotted something new with every reading: the before-and-after end papers, all the different things the larvae have nibbled, and the larva sprouting wings at the end.
Interwoven with the highly entertaining story and brilliant illustrations are some pretty important messages: the importance of self-belief, the value of perseverance and the strength to break free of any limitations placed upon you. As is typical of Duncan’s books, these themes are subtle and not laboured. I also love that the lead is a female character with ambition and a sense of adventure.
We highly recommend Molly’s Moon Mission. It’s already become a favourite in our house.
Suitable for children aged 2+
Thank you to Templar for sending me this book to review. I reviewed this book as part of the Molly’s Moon Mission Blog tour. Click here for a special guest post from author Duncan Beedie where he shows you how to draw Molly. There’s also a feature on some toddler art inspired by the book for you to try at home.
Read my review of another of Duncan’s picture books, The Last Chip, here.